There was… twice a pandemic and its impact on all human activities. In a few years, when the generation that lived through and defeated COVID will tell this saga by the fireside, it will have all the characteristics of a horror movie. For a little over a year now, the whole planet has been living a real thriller and there is no doubt that the “survivors” of this tragedy will be stronger than before.
Because the essence of crises is to create changes, mutations, and innovations that allow us to evolve and move forward. As the saying goes: every cloud has a silver lining. In any case, this is the state of mind of the top management and all the staff of the Yaounde Conference Centre while for the second year in a row, we must adapt to the unfortunate consequences of covid-19.
Long before the outbreak of the pandemic, the situation of the Conference Centre was not very good. Certainly, in terms of prestige, fame and notoriety, the monument of Nkolnyada does not have many competitors. These assets are moreover reinforced and emphasized in broad strokes by all these institutions that jostle at its door: the CONAC, the SENAT, the Constitutional Council, the National Assembly today; yesterday the Central Committee of the CPDM which had stayed there from 1982 to 2017, excuse the little!
A great group of people and certainly added value in terms of respectability and credibility both at the national and international levels. The only thing is: if this beautiful assembly makes the plumage of the Nkolnyada building more beautiful and more attractive, it does not bring more cheese or butter in the spinach. On the contrary, new constraints must be managed since each “tenant” has its own requirements and specificity. The financial situation of the Yaounde Conference Centre remains worrying and the State has to make enormous sacrifices to ensure its daily operation.
It is in this context that covid-19 fell on us like lightning from the sky. Fortunately, the rehab was complete and the contract plan was drawing to a close. These two opportunities allowed us to absorb the shock of the pandemic and the strongest shocks. For all that, the Palace is shaken but like the reed, it bends but does not break. Since 2020, the number of events has dropped by more than half. Revenues have followed the same downward trend. However, the staff, the Board of Directors, and the General Management are resilient, imaginative and inventive in staying the course.
This issue of PACY NEWS is a further illustration of this. Through the articles we invite you to read, you’ll discover how the Conference Centre is standing up to COVID and, in spite of everything, continuing to carry out its missions with brilliance and efficiency.
This is the place and the opportunity for me to express my gratitude to my collaborators and all the staff, to our manager ACCENT MEDIA, to the partners who trusted us through their advertising insertions, to the President and to the members of the Board of Directors, to the Minister of Arts and Culture as well as to his colleague of Finance,
respectively technical and financial guardians. I wish you a pleasant reading of this magazine whose periodicity should be more regular. We take the commitment as we reiterate our determination to put our know-how and our professionalism at stake to continue to offer you high-quality services each time you organize an event on the heights of Mount Nkolnyada.
By Christophe MIEN ZOK, General Manager of the Yaounde Conference Centre